Gordon: 'Timber' recording available
1st September 2011
This new percussion sextet is an evening-length tour de force scored for six graduated wooden 2x4s, also known as Simantras — Greek liturgical percussion instruments used by French composer Iannis Xenakis. The work brings the physicality, endurance and technique of percussion performance to a new level.
Gordon shapes the music of Timber in both polyrhythmic and dynamic waves of textures: often each players' hands are in separate rhythmic "worlds," each traversing a different dynamic contour from loud to soft to loud, similar in some respects to his solo for percussion, XY.
Michael Gordon discusses Timber
Much of Gordon's music demonstrates a deep exploration into the extreme possibilities and stunning nature of rhythm, as well as the enriching, yet disturbing, multidimensionality of polyrhythmic layers — what has been termed in his music to be "glorious confusion." Gordon's works, including Trance, Gotham, and Decasia, point to his interest in complex rhythmic and textural territory. His percussion sextet takes these elements and explores the extreme possibilities of rhythm and texture to a beautifully intense degree. Timber is a unique and exciting addition to the world of percussion.
Timber was co-commissioned by the Dutch dance company, Club Guy and Roni and the percussion ensembles Slagwerk den Haag and Mantra Percussion, with generous support from the Nief-Norf project.